A LACQUER GILT BRONZE FIGURE OF BUDDHA UNDER MUCHALINDA THAILAND, MID-19TH CENTURY

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Lot 46
A LACQUER GILT BRONZE FIGURE OF BUDDHA UNDER MUCHALINDA
THAILAND, MID-19TH CENTURY

Sold for HK$ 625,000 (US$ 79,982) inc. premium
A LACQUER GILT BRONZE FIGURE OF BUDDHA UNDER MUCHALINDA
THAILAND, MID-19TH CENTURY
83cm (32 ¾ in). high

Footnotes

  • 泰國 十九世紀中期 銅漆金七龍佛坐像

    Published:
    Melody Rod-Ari, 'The Buddha as Sacred Siamese King: Brocaded Buddhas of the Third Reign' in Rebecca Hall and Robert Mintz, The Walters Art Museum Journal, 2018, fig.4, forthcoming.

    Provenance:
    Private Collection, USA, since 1970s

    This finely cast popular representation of the Buddha is lacquered-gilt and adorned with inset past stones typical of the Rattanakosin period that commenced in 1782. The Buddha sheltering under the seven-headed 'naga' is typical of the showy glitter cherished at this time. Its iconography relates to the life story of the Historical Buddha, Shakyamuni: in the fifth week of the seven weeks, he meditated after attaining Enlightenment, when he was seated at the edge of Lake Muchalinda, a terrible storm arose, causing the waters of the lake to rise. Seeing that Buddha was lost in meditation, the serpent ('naga') king Muchalinda slipped his coils under Buddha's body, lifting him above the flood. At the same time, he spread the hoods of his seven heads to shelter him. This image is found throughout Southeast Asia.

    Rod-Ari, in her discussion of the use of decorated robe in Thai Buddhas of the 19th century, notes "The use of such patterns was likely the result of their association with royalty, as floral patterns on articles of clothing were reserved for the exclusive use of the court. Such carefully guarded motifs, therefore, were also suitable for an exalted figure such as Prince Siddhartha Gautama who would become the Buddha. Other motifs such as patterns of small seated Buddhas or geometric shapes can also be found on robes of sculptures from this period; they are, however, not as common."

    Compare with a closely related example held by the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, see Menzies, in Arts of Asia, 'New Dimensions,' Hong Kong, 2003, pp.54-63, no.16.
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A LACQUER GILT BRONZE FIGURE OF BUDDHA UNDER MUCHALINDA THAILAND, MID-19TH CENTURY
A LACQUER GILT BRONZE FIGURE OF BUDDHA UNDER MUCHALINDA THAILAND, MID-19TH CENTURY
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